Reading: A Study on the Children’s Coping Strategies in the Aftermath of Tsunami: 2004

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A Study on the Children’s Coping Strategies in the Aftermath of Tsunami: 2004

Author:

GRK Dissanayake

Department of Philosophy and Psychology, University of Peradeniya, Peradeniya, LK
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Abstract

Children are especially vulnerable to the effects of natural disasters as they are still developing an understanding of their social world and necessary coping mechanisms to withstand stress resulting from disasters. In the absence of effective coping, the meaning and impact of traumatic events may continue to play a role in the personality and psychological development of the child. The present study examined the children’s efforts to cope with emotional distress 15 and 18 months after the 2004 tsunami. This study included a stratified random sample of 126 school children aged 9-12 years; 63 girls and 63 boys. Both qualitative and quantitative methods were used for data collection and analysis. The findings of the current study clearly offer insights into how children attempt to cope with traumatic experiences. The level of emotional distress varied significantly depending upon the type of coping strategy used. Around 83 per cent of the children reported using religious strategy most frequently, followed by 82 per cent using distraction strategy and 81 per cent using social support strategy. The least frequently used coping strategies were social withdrawal used by 20 per cent and blaming others used by 21 per cent. Children’s coping choices indicated that at various stages of a child’s emotional experience to a traumatic event, different methods of coping bring effective benefits. The findings indicate tremendous resilience in the majority of children to cope with extreme distress.

Sri Lanka Journal of Advanced Social Studies Vol. 2 - No.1 Page 93-110

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4038/sljass.v2i1.5120
DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljass.v2i1.5120
How to Cite: Dissanayake, G., (2013). A Study on the Children’s Coping Strategies in the Aftermath of Tsunami: 2004. Sri Lanka Journal of Advanced Social Studies. 2(1), pp.93–110. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljass.v2i1.5120
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Published on 09 Jan 2013.
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